Urgent action needed on ageing population
10 March 2005
BRUSSELS – The government’s top priority in the next few years should be to provide for an ageing population, according to Paris based Organisation for and Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
On Thursday, Le Soir reported that the OECD – which has 30 member countries and is often called the ‘rich nations’ club’ – had called in its annual report for radical changes in Belgium.
It argued the government needs to reform the health sector to better manage its finances, improve its administration and cut back on subsidising services like public transport.
The OECD also thinks it’s vital to cut unemployment, particularly among older citizens, school leavers and ethnic minorities.
It’s time to scrap financial incentives for early retirement, it stated.
Productivity in Belgium needs to increase more each year, according to the economists, and obstacles in the information and communication technology sectors should be tackled to allow further growth.
Inflexible planning laws, strict rules on overtime and shop opening hours and too few possibilities of part-time contracts were all factors identified as hampering growth.
[Copyright Expatica 2005]
Subject: Belgian news